The Legend of Gasparilla

Our Next Event: The Legend of Gasparilla

Tuesday, October 25 at 7pm at the
at the Historic Green Street Church,
corner of S. Indiana Ave and 2nd Ave, Englewood

Our guest speaker Crystal Diff will dive into the legend of the infamous pirate Gasparilla and the lasting impact it’s made on southwest Florida’s coast. While exploring the ​local origins of the legend, we’ll uncover the historical background of how a “big fish” story captured a railroad tycoon and made its mark on our coast forever.

Crystal Diff is the Executive Director for the Boca Grande Historical Society. She has spent over a decade working with cultural institutions across southwest Florida in history, art, archives, anthropology, and archaeology. Previously to BGHS, she provided public education programs and exhibits on local history for Charlotte County History Services.

 

About the Boca Grande Historical Society:
The Boca Grande Historical Society & History Center is committed to enhancing our understanding of the history of Gasparilla Island and its surrounding area. Their goal is to provide personally rewarding opportunities to learn about the remarkable people and events that shaped our past. Learn more…

Hurricane Ian

People have been asking how the Green Street Church made out during Hurricane Ian. It survived!  Just one broken window. But our new storage shed and some trees were ruined. Also the Historical Marker was snapped right off its post.

(Click photos for larger view.)

PEOPLE FOR TREES

Cancelled due to Hurricane Ian

Tuesday, October 4 at 7pm at the Historic Green Street Church, 510 Indiana Ave., Englewood

Our guest speaker will be Samantha Gentrup, a local teacher and environmental advocate. She will be representing People for Trees, a grass-roots effort that began in 1997 and grew into a 501©3 non-profit organization and is celebrating 25 years of promoting the many benefits of trees.
These include providing oxygen, shade, noise and light buffers, controlling storm water runoff, and soil erosion and cooling our ever increasing temperatures since the presence of trees can reduce outside temperatures by as much as 15 degrees.
Samantha Gentrup is a local teacher and environmental advocate. She is originally from Ohio, but moved to Florida in 2015 because of her love of wildlife and water.
When SWFL experienced the red tide ecological crisis in 2018, Samantha co-led a statewide demonstration in which close to 10,000 people simultaneously stood in solidarity from coast to coast in an event called Hands Along the Water in order to bring awareness to Florida’s failing ecosystems.
Hands Along the Water continued as a grassroots movement to engage local communities in education and outreach in order to promote reverence and respect for Florida’s most valuable resource: ecosystems.
Samantha enjoys teaching her students about environmental protection and empowering her students to make a difference.
In her free time, she enjoys gardening, kayaking, paddle boarding, sand volleyball, and her dogs and cats (all rescues).
She has converted her lawn to a butterfly garden that is over seventy percent native plants and hosts numerous species of butterflies and birds as well as bees, rabbits, and more.
Over the course of 25 years, People for Trees has continually provided opportunities for people to interact with and embrace the natural world with events such as the annual Tree Fair since 1999 and the annual Tour de North Port bicycle ride since 2012, kayak outings and hikes featuring “The Hidden Jewel of North Port”, the Myakkahatchee Creek, and providing educational “Florida-friendly Yard” workshops.
Join us Tuesday, October 4 at 7pm at the Historic Green Street Church, 510 Indiana Ave., Englewood. Admission is free but donations for the upkeep of the iconic building will be greatly appreciated.

American Rescue Plan Grant

Funding has been provided to the Lemon Bay Historical Society by Florida Humanities through the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARP) of 2021. NEH is committed to Sustaining the Humanities through the American Rescue Plan.

Due to the pandemic, the Lemon Bay Historical Society had to cancel its traditional monthly community programs. Fundraising events were also canceled. The Society is responsible for maintaining the historic Green Street Church building and its property.

To help fund general operating expenses, the Historical Society has received a $2,500 “American Rescue Plan” grant from Florida Humanities. These expenses include lawn mowing, water, electricity, landscaping maintenance, insurance, taxes, building upkeep, etc.

OUR MISSION
In 1985, the Lemon Bay Historical Society was officially incorporated as a non-profit organization whose mission was “for the specific purposes of perpetuating the legacy of the past and honoring the pioneer settlers of the Lemon Bay area.”  To carry out this mission the Society:

  • Presents programs on history, archaeology, music, wildlife and historical preservation
  • Schedules talks about and reenactments of persons of local historical interest
  • Invites local authors who write about historical events to discuss their works
  • Publishes and sells books on local history, Englewood pioneers and local lore
  • Maintains the Historic Green Street Church building for community use

WHAT IS THE AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN?

This year Florida Humanities awarded 129 organizations a total of $1.88 million in “American Rescue Plan” (ARP) funding, helping to retain more than 400 humanities jobs, support rent and utility costs, implement technology needs and more for small to midsize organizations.

When the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act was passed by Congress on March 11, 2021, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) received $135 million to assist humanities organizations across the country affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The state humanities councils, including Florida Humanities, each received a portion of the NEH award to provide short term general operating support in their respective states to museums, archives, historic sites, and other humanities-focused nonprofits.

WHAT IS THE NEH?
On September 29, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act into law. This law created the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The purpose of the NEH is to advance the humanities and its respective disciplines into the public square.
The NEH soon realized the immense challenge of its mission. To respond more effectively to local needs, the NEH decided to establish a humanities council in every state, plus six U.S. territories. Florida Humanities was established in 1973.

WHAT DOES FLORIDA HUMANITIES DO?
Florida Humanities works with local humanities organizations to accomplish its mission. This includes libraries, museums, and historical societies, among others. Like the Lemon Bay Historical Society, many of these organizations are committed to their communities and rely on volunteers and limited funding to sustain their operations.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed by the Lemon Bay Historical Society, do not necessarily represent those of Florida Humanities or the National Endowment for the Humanities.

MEMBERSHIP
The Lemon Bay Historical Society welcomes new members. You do not need to be a historian to join, just someone interested in preserving the history of Englewood. For information visit: https://lemonbayhistory.com/about-us/

Historical Society Receives Grant

Unfortunately, due to the pandemic, the Lemon Bay Historical Society has had to cancel its traditional monthly community programs. Fundraising events were also canceled. The Society is responsible for maintaining the historic Green Street Church building and its property.

To help fund general operating expenses, the Historical Society has received a $5000 CARES grant from Florida Humanities. These expenses include lawn mowing, water, electricity, landscaping maintenance, insurance, taxes, building upkeep, etc.

MISSION
In 1985, the Lemon Bay Historical Society was officially incorporated as a non-profit organization whose mission was “for the specific purposes of perpetuating the legacy of the past and honoring the pioneer settlers of the Lemon Bay area.”
To carry out this mission the Society:

  • Presents programs on history, archaeology, music, wildlife, preservation of area historic buildings and opportunities to visit them, persons of historical interest and authors who write about historical events.
  • Publishes and sells books on local history, Englewood pioneers and local lore
  • Maintains the Historic Green Street Church building for community use.

THE CARES ACT
With the passage of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on March 27, 2020 the NEH received $75 million to distribute to cultural institutions affected by the coronavirus, COVID-19

WHAT IS THE NEH?
On September 29, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act into law. This law created the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The purpose of the NEH is to advance the humanities and its respective disciplines into the public square.
The NEH soon realized the immense challenge of its mission. To respond more effectively to local needs, the NEH decided to establish a humanities council in every state, plus six U.S. territories. Florida Humanities was established in 1973.

WHAT DOES FLORIDA HUMANITIES DO?
Florida Humanities works with local humanities organizations to accomplish its mission. This includes libraries, museums, and historical societies, among others. Like the Lemon Bay Historical Society, many of these organizations are committed to their communities and rely on volunteers and limited funding to sustain their operations.

MEMBERSHIP
The Lemon Bay Historical Society welcomes new members. You do not need to be a historian to join, just someone interested in preserving the history of Englewood. For information visit: https://lemonbayhistory.com/about-us/

Christmas wishes for Green Street Church

By STEVE REILLY Staff Writer for the Englewood Sun

Lemon Bay Historical Society treasurer Carol Garrett, president Charlie Hicks and vice president Esther Horton thank all those who donated to resettle the historic Green Street Church and Museum at the Lemon Bay Cemetery. SUN PHOTO BY CHRIS PORTER

ENGLEWOOD — The historic Green Street Church is settled in its new location at the Lemon
Bay Cemetery on South Indiana Avenue — but that doesn’t mean the work is completed.
The Lemon Bay Historical Society still needs help before the 90-year-old historic building can
be reopened to the public. The members put together a wish list they hope donors can help fill.
“We still need help financially and in-kind help,” Historical Society president Charlie Hicks
said. “We’re at a standstill.”

The project has proven expensive, far more so than anticipated. The nonprofit Historical
Society raised $161,000 through donations and grants of which $160,000 has been spent on
the project.

After a year-long wait, in September, in the middle of the night, R.E. Johnson & Sons movers
lifted the 90-year-old church onto a trailer, tied it down securely and inched it from its
longtime location on West Green Street to the Lemon Bay Cemetery on South Indiana Avenue
(State Road 776). The 1.1-mile journey took most of the night at around 4 mph.

The church was gently set down at the southeast corner of the cemetery, its new permanent
home. In October, the steeple — which was removed before the move — was placed atop the
church.

Since then, Leo Pfliger Construction, the Englewood contractor overseeing the project for the
Historic Society, began work on a retention pond that’s required by Sarasota County and
preparing the site for the finishing touches.

Historical Society members had hoped to reopen soon after the new year, but a lot more work
needs to be completed — such as landscaping, lighting, a parking area, handicap-accessible
ramp, and hook ups to utilities — before the county will issue its certificate of occupancy to the
Historical Society.

The Historical Society will have access to a $50,000 grant from the Sarasota CountyEnglewood Community Redevelopment Agency. However, the grant provides reimbursement
funds the Historical Society only receives after it completes all the work and garners permit
approvals required by Sarasota County. The historic building has to have its certificate of
occupancy before the county will release the $50,000.

“We can’t plan anything,” Hicks said.
Members are continuing their fundraising efforts. The Lemon Bay Garden Club, Florida Native
Plant Society and the Master Gardeners are all ready to assist with the landscaping, which is
also required by the county.

The church had been Englewood’s first house of worship and for years sat on property the
Historical Society leased from the Crosspoint Church of the Nazarene on West Green Street.
The Historical Society bought property at the cemetery so the church can have its “forever
home.”

The historic building hasn’t seen a religious service in decades, but the Historical Society
schedules weddings, memorial services, meetings and other community events at the church.
The Historical Society is now planning for a fundraiser 6 p.m. Jan. 25 at the Englewood
United Methodist Church, 700 E. Dearborn St. That happens to be the congregation that
originally built the church nine decades ago. The fundraiser will include a video highlighting
the move and a performance by John Tuff & Friends.

Email: reilly@sun-herald.com

Historic church wish list
The nonprofit Lemon Bay Historical Society depends upon donations and hopes donors will help fulfill their
wish for the reopening historic Green Street Church:
• Changeable letter sign for front of building
• Irrigation for landscape plants; soaker hoses. Maybe an irrigation well.
• Handicap signs.
• Concrete parking bumpers.
• Sidewalks completed.
• Solar-powered parking lights.
• 11 silver buttonwood trees.
• 109 cocoplum plants.
• Two black olive trees
• 14 bags of organic mulch.

 

2019 CRACKER FAIR

DOWNLOAD VENDOR FORM FOR 2019

Food Vendors, Artists, Authors, Local Merchants, Crafts, Music, and more 

 Lemon Dessert Baking Contest

Located in Pioneer Plaza, Dearborn Street, Englewood, Florida.

Enjoy Classic Country Music with John Tuff and Friends at the 2019 Cracker Fair!

 

New to the Cracker Fair, enjoy Singer/Songwriter James Hawkins!


 

CRACKER FAIR 2018:

(CLICK FOR LARGER VIEW)
(CLICK FOR LARGER VIEW)

CLICK TO SEE THE 2018 CRACKER FAIR HIGHLIGHT VIDEO


A great crowd on a great day at last year’s Fair watching a whip cracking demonstration by Isabella Park from the Bit of Hope Ranch. (See video below.)
Cracker whip demonstration by Isabella Park of Englewood’s Bit of Hope Ranch
John Tuff and Friends will be back with great county music.  (Video below)

We thank our 2018 Cracker Fair Sponsors! Please support them:

OLDE VILLAGE PUBLIX
PIONEER DAYS COMMITTEE
RON A. SMITH INSURANCE
Sarasota County Community Redevelopment Agency

Thanks to all who helped make the 2018 CRACKER FAIR a success!

We are proud to list, in no particular order, the vendors, artists, merchants and organizations who were at the 16th Annual Cracker Fair: Variety, Food, Fun and new discoveries.

Pioneer Days Committee: Kids’ Free Arts & Crafts Tent

Catharina Bearse: pastel paintings

Angler Pocket Guides

FurBaby Beds

S&K’s Nice Stuff

Les Caraher, mountain music

John Tuff and Friends, classical Western music

Hazy’s What Knots

Shabby Chic Boutique

RJ Coons: Southwest Florida mysteries Blaine Sterling novels

D.L. Havlin: Florida action mysteries, historical fiction, thrillers

Brenda Spalding: adult mystery novels

Southern Yankee Foods

Jane Deutsch: painted visors, jewelry

Young Living Essential Oils

Artist Karen Dukes, LMC Outdoors

Uniqpottery

Glassy Lady Jewelry

925 Fabulous Jewelry

Mermaid Jewelry

Sons of Confederate Veterans

Trinkets & Treasures

Blasé Van Thomme: pens, key chains

Pat Vettese

Eden East

Wagon Wheel Décor

Pretty Girl Cosmetics

Morgan’s Goat Soap

Punta Gorda Historical Society: swamp cabbage

Peace River Wildlife Center: birds of prey

Susan Klaus: fantasies & thrillers; part owner of a thoroughbred horse farm
and cattle ranch

Clarissa Thomasson, Salt Marsh Publications: Florida historical fiction

Bob Fuqua: books, fossils, sharks teeth

Sarasota County Mosquito Management

Elsie Quirk and Charlotte Libraries

S.H.O.R.E.: fresh lemonade

Sarasota County Englewood Community Redevelopment Agency

Designs by Patrice

Sweet Leaf Relief (wellness foods)

Englewood Masonic Lodge 360

N&G Cornhole

Paradise Hot Dogs

G & E Concessions: funnel cakes, fresh fruit smoothies